Choi Min-jeong denied Arianna Fontana and Suzanne Schulting another Beijing Winter Olympic gold as she retained her 1500m title to close the short track speed skating programme.
There was barely anything to separate the three favourites for the race, but the South Korean surged clear to win in 2:17.81 having earlier set a new Olympic record, with Fontana claiming silver over Schulting after a photo finish.
There was a blow for Team GB before the event, as Kathryn Thomson was ruled out on “medical grounds”, but no other reasons were given.
'Wins it again' - Choi storms to gold in thrilling women's 1500m final
There was huge confusion after the first quarter-final heat, with suggestions an extra lap may have been raced, but the results were eventually confirmed and all of the favourites made it through to the next stage.
The racing started to heat up in the semi-finals, with Fontana needing to battle for a spot in the medal race. The Italian came from behind to qualify behind Lee Yu-bin.
Schulting had a bit more of a test in her race. The Dutch athlete usually likes to get out in front in her races but she needed an explosion of pace to go clear with Belgium’s Hanne Desmet, before qualifying fairly easily.
Choi showed that she would be the one to beat by setting a new Olympic record in her semi, a sudden burst of pace seeing her surge past the field to win her race in 2:16.83.
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Han Yutong gave the Chinese fans something to cheer about in the early stages of the race, leading the way with 10 laps to go, but Schulting closed her down.
Choi made her move with eight laps to go and the field were keen to bide their time to make a final move for the line. Schulting eventually led the charge with three laps to go but she lost time by making contact with Lee, allowing Fontana to pass her. With the two big rivals battling for silver, Choi held strong to win gold, with Fontana given second place on the line.
Choi Min-jeong took victory in the 1500m in a close finish
Image credit: Getty Images
It brought up an 11th Olympic medal for the Italian, who won the 500m earlier in the Games. Schulting - who had been tipped to match her achievement of winning all of her individual events, as she had done at the World Championships - ended with two golds, a silver and a bronze from Beijing.
Canada win men’s 5000m relay
2018 champions Hungary had failed to make the final of the men’s 5000m relay, making China arguably the favourites to win the title alongside South Korea.
It was the Koreans who led comfortably for the first half of the race, but that was when Canada made their move. China tried and failed with a few moves up the inside and with 12 laps to go, the hosts pushed it too far - with Sun Long taking a tumble and leaving Canada fighting it out with Korea for gold.
The North Americans looked strong and they extended their lead over the Koreans, with Dubois bringing them home for gold.
Korea comfortably took silver, with Italy confirmed as bronze medallists ahead of the Russian Olympic Committee following a photo finish.
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